Athens Drive High School Marching Band

The law firm of Younce, Vtipil, & Baznik, P.A., is a proud sponsor of the Athens Drive High School Marching Band.

Marching bands at Athens Drive and other high schools receive no funding from the Wake County Public School System. The bands must collect a “fair share obligation” payment from the families of band students. Financial aid is available to families who demonstrate a true financial need. Musical education offers much to young musicians. Our law firm is proud to help offset the costs of students taking part in this vital musical performance and education program.

The marching band at Athens Drive High begins to practice in mid- to late July and performs from August through December. The band’s 2018 schedule includes playing at five home football games, five band competitions and three local Christmas parades.

The school’s band program educates nearly 200 members and has earned significant honors, including numerous “Grand Champion” and “First Place” awards at local and regional marching band events. The band has consistently received “Superior” ratings at the N.C. Concert Band Festival.

The Athens Drive marching was one of about 20 bands that performed during halftime of the Outback Bowl college football game in Tampa, FL on New Year’s Day. Previously, the band has performed at the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, the oldest Thanksgiving parade in the country. The band has performed a song on ABC TV’s “Good Morning America” and marched in the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Jerry Markoch is director of bands at Athens Drive High School.

We Support the Benefits of Music Education

A child whose life is filled with music and music education benefits in several ways. Musical training requires and enhances awareness, listening skills, concentration, and memory.

Music classes have been found to have a positive effect on academics, resulting in greater achievement and understanding in math and spatial reasoning skills, reading and verbal skills, and many additional skills.

The Music Empowers Foundation tracked more than 25,000 middle and high school students for 10 years and found that students in music classes generally receive higher scores on standardized tests than students with little or no musical involvement. For example, music students scored an average of 63 points higher on the verbal section and 44 points higher on the math sections of the SATs than non-music students.

The collaboration required of a band to make music and to march in formation while making music creates strong social and communications skills, as well as self-confidence.

A study in the Journal of Research in Music Education, entitled “A Home Away from Home: The World of the High School Music Classroom,” found that participation in school band, choir, or orchestra groups yielded not just musical and academic benefits, but psychological and social benefits as well. Students in the study spoke about “the importance of labels and identifiers and changing perceptions throughout one’s school career.”

Students involved with music groups said they enjoyed the acquisition of musical knowledge and ability, the travel opportunities, and the personal relationships they formed. They thought other students respected them and saw them as intelligent, particularly at higher grade levels, after hearing them perform. Music classes were described as relaxing and fun. Musicians appreciated the positive reinforcement and “somewhat freer climate” in class.

Ellen Judson, writing about “The Importance of Music” for the Music Empowers Foundation, asserted that “students who participate in school band or orchestra have the lowest levels of current and lifelong use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs among any other group in our society.”

Music’s Benefits Seen at an Early Age

A PBS report cites research into the benefits of music education that begin in early childhood. Listening, singing and moving with a group as a young child is a gateway experience for formal education. Beginning to play – or play with – simple musical instruments uses ears and eyes, and large and small muscles. Childhood music also plays a role in better language development, which is socially advantageous to young children.

By the age of 6, weekly voice and piano lessons can add three points to a child’s IQ, according to a study at the University of Toronto at Mississauga. Students at elementary schools with superior music education programs scored around 22 percent higher in English and 20 percent higher in math on standardized tests, compared to schools with low-quality music programs, according to a study at the University of Kansas.

Music can improve your child’ abilities in learning and other non-music tasks, but it’s important to understand that music is about enjoyment, not becoming smarter.

Dr. Kyle Pruett, clinical professor of child psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine and a practicing musician, told PBS the many intrinsic benefits to music education include discipline, learning a skill, managing performance, and being part of a social group.

Our Raleigh Law Firm is Dedicated to Giving Back to the Community

As a personal injury law firm, Younce, Vtipil, & Baznik, P.A., works to create a brighter future for clients who may be trying to overcome serious car accident injuries, a workplace injury, or domestic trauma. Ensuring our clients’ financial well-being helps them to resume their roles as productive members of the Triangle area. We are proud to give back to the community where we live and work.

By supporting the Athens Drive High Marching Band in Cary, we are confident that we are contributing to our community today and making an investment in the future. Many of these high school band members will graduate, go to college, eventually make their homes here in the Triangle and be tomorrow’s community leaders.

We hope you will support the Athens Drive band or your local high school band, either financially if you can or by enjoying their music at a football game, holiday parade or marching band contest.